Captain Toy/Michael's Review of the Week

Review of Dr. Henry Jones Sr. - Indiana Jones
Exclusive Sixth Scale Action Figure

Sideshow Collectibles
Date Published: 2009-12-02
Written By: Michael Crawford
Overall Average Rating: 4 out of 4

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Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Tonight's review is one of those tag team matches, but rather than my just shooting the photos and another writer providing the text, you're going to get text from both of us - aren't you lucky!

Guy Klender, Indy fan extraordinaire, is back to do the heavy lifting with the writing chores, but I'll be providing my own two cents in each category as well. I couldn't help myself - as I was shooting this figure, I was that wowed.

So let's turn it over to Guy for his introduction, then on with the review!

“It was his obsession really…”

As we all sat around our holiday tables this past weekend and gave thanks for things, one of mine was to Michael for letting me write this review and the another was to SIDESHOW for keeping Indy alive with the 12” line. This week we are taking a look at Henry Jones Sr.    Medicom already released their version of this figure earlier in the year and you can see that review here at MWCTOYS.COM as well.  I think Sideshow hit this one out of the park and can only hope the continuing adventures of the Indiana Jones line look this good.  Marion Ravenwood, please.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Packaging - Guy ***, MWC ***1/2
Guy - Magnetic closures, lots of great background text, nice graphic design, and they are completely collector friendly.  You'll be able to take it all out and put it back later any time you feel like it, no damage done.  I dropped one star from Michael’s original review, as the temple-style graphic that has appeared on every Indy line has become boring.  Once again I wish Lucasfilm would let up a bit on its stranglehold and allow people like Sideshow to show some real style. 

MWC - I'm a bit more lenient than Guy here, as the magnetic closures and completely collector friendly nature of the packaging is still top notch for me. It doesn't quite compare to some of the new packaging we're seeing from Hot Toys and Enterbay, but it's still some of the best on the market. I'm looking forward to what we get from Sideshow with any new license...if we ever see them announce another new sixth scale license, that is.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Sculpting - Guy ****; MWC ****
Guy - Holy Crap…Sean Connery is in my house!!!!  This sculpt is so spot on its frightening.  The stern judgmental look he gives to Henry “Indiana” Jones Jr. is here in all its glory.  Great sculpting is hard to do and when they get this wonderful they belong in a museum.  Thankfully Michael and I have one each.

The tight and tiny cuts needed to show the hair in the beard and on his head…fantastic.  The ears got me as well.  There is so much depth here that it seems life-like. It is fun to put this Connery next to my Bond figure from Sideshow, not only to see how Connery has aged but also how far Sideshow has come on their sculpts. 

The hands too are great. There are 2 pair, fists and accessory holding hands. The hands could have been standard issue but nope...we get aged hands, and it’s a great touch.  

MWC - it's gorgeous work, no doubt about it. That's two human head sculpts in a row that show tremendous realism (Lando and now Henry), and Henry does NOT have the annoying over sized issue that poor Lando has. The detail work on the hair is particularly nice, but it's really the wrinkles and fine lines of the face that give it that realism.

It's also an excellent likeness of Connery as Jones, with no production issues to hold back the original artistry. This is easily the best head sculpt in the Sideshow Indy line. You could pick some nits - the nose is slightly off, and the chin could be a little narrower - but these issues really are quite minor.

I've included a photo of the last Indy with his dad, and it's pretty obvious that this head is about 20% or so smaller, especially in person. Of course, it also helps that Henry Sr's costume is thicker and bulks up the body a bit.

The open hands are sculpted to work with the accessories, and they can hold and pose with them all quite well. There's also the fisted pair, which we'll discuss more in the Accessories section.

Pops Jones stands about the same height as his son though, since they both use the Pro body, but switching him out to a narrow shouldered or slim TrueType wouldn't be very tough. I'd only suggest it though if you are looking for a little more height in relation to Indy.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Paint - Guy ****, MWC ***1/2
Guy - Mike says over and over again how much paint can wreck a sculpt, and we all know that to be true, but this is a great example of how it can make a great sculpt even better.  Multiple light washes of color over the beard bring out such a natural life-like look.  First, a light wash of white, then a light grey, then a darker one.  I am not sure how many different washes they did but I am grateful for each and every one. 

The eyes are not overly glossy and have some great life to them. They did a wash of umber on the side of the face and in the ear and nose area bringing out depth and texture. The wrinkles in the forehead, the deep lines of the mouth all come out here. The lips get a subtle gloss but less than on some other figures giving him a few more years than some of our other Indy characters.  

MWC - Looking at the photos of the beard and hair, particularly close ups, you might not think they are as good as Guy describes. They are. The problem here with close ups is that it's like looking too close at an oil painting. Stand back and it's a beautiful scene - get too close and it's just blobs of paint. In hand, the paint application gives a very lifelike appearance to the facial hair and eyebrows, as well as what hair he has left on his head.

Oddly, he has the catch lights again (doll dots), which Sideshow lost with a couple of their more recent releases. However, they are VERY tiny, making them pretty much a non-issue.

All the work is clean and neat, with excellent eyes, lips and skin tone. I scored slightly lower here than Guy because of an issue that I suspect may be specific to mine, or that at least varies quite a bit from figure to figure - that 'umber' of which Guy speaks. The skin around the temples of my figure is very, very dark, looking more like a bad case of rosacea than a natural variation in tone. It's not obvious from a front on view, but in person detracted enough to pull the score down slightly. If yours lacks this issue, I can readily understand a four star score.

Of course, this doesn't mean it's quite as good as the best Hot Toys quality...yet. But it certainly rivals some of their work, and at a price point of almost half, that's quite impressive.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Articulation - Guy ***1/2; MWC ***1/2
Guy - Sideshow's Prometheus body is finally coming into its own. I didn't have a single technical issue this time - no breakage, no loose joints, no trouble swapping heads or hands, nothing. And with those technical issues out of the way, the body can show its true potential.

The Pro has all the articulation you expect in a high-end sixth scale figure, and that articulation works properly. The body hangs naturally, and takes (and holds) very lifelike, realistic poses. Henry is able to stand with his weight shifted to either foot, bring his elbows in close to his torso, tilt his head in ever direction, and keep his feet flat on the ground in just about any stance. These are all critical aspects for a sixth scale body, and allow for fluid, flowing poses.

I'm also very happy with the wrist pegs. While they are a little tight, I had no problem swapping hands.

MWC - Yep, everything Guy said. I didn't have any mechanical issues this time around, and the issues with loose joints seem to be corrected. I particularly like the wrists and ankles, which have an excellent range of movement and are quite easy to swap. And let's not forget the ball neck joint, which allows for plenty of tilt in any direction.

There's still the wonky look to the hips in some poses though, a problem that didn't really bother me until the bigger issues had been corrected. It's not a major issue for me, but there's just something about the way the front of the leg sticks out in certain poses that keeps the body from a perfect score. It's not a big enough issue that I feel any desire to swap this figure to something else (as I mentioned earlier, I'd only do that if I was looking for a little more height for the character), and I'm satisfied enough with the Pro at this point that it would never be a factor in a purchase decision.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Accessories - Guy *** (regular) ***1/2 (exclusive); MWC ****
Guy - I have the exclusive as I do with all Indy Sideshow figures and this one gets the extra ½ star for the grail Tablet. If you are a geek like I am for this stuff, get a good piece of paper from a craft store, a darker red colored pencil and with a soft careful touch you too can have a grail tablet rubbing.  You can do it…trust me.

He comes with his grail diary. It has a dark leather cover with rounded corners, a few scratches and scrapes to show its age.  It’s opened to a page and it is a dead on miniature.  I have included a shot of the actual filmed diary here...yes I have seen it.  

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

Next up is the umbrella. Wow, Sideshow you’re doing so great. The umbrella is folded shut and has the wooden handle and tip.  Each of those gets a wash to give it a wood like appearance and silver metal accents on the tip and ribs. Instead of leaving it in molded black they gave it a wash to bring out the folds in the fabric and the look of waterproofing.  

The grail itself, it has the splotched red clay and gold foiling that the screen prop did.  Something seems a bit off on it but its still great and so many were used for stunts and close ups that any grail looks good.   

Henry’s case. This is an awesome piece.  It’s heavy for one thing, so know that when posing him, as it puts a lot of extra weight on whatever hand you put it in.  Brass clasps and hinges, real leather straps, a handle rigged to move on tiny rings and so much age you can imagine the miles this thing has seen.   

The grail tablet made to look of stone and even the cuts around the edges are movie accurate.  Now doing lettering that small and sculpted is difficult and so it’s not perfect but it would take an uber-geeky Indy fan to notice. Thankfully there are few of those. This exclusive piece is fantastic to have and I lucked out in getting him, but even without the tablet the accessories for Henry are out of this world.

MWC - I'm being more generous than Guy here, largely because I'm so impressed by the sheer number of unique items.

The grail diary looks great, fits in his hands nicely, and as Guy said, has a page right out of the film. The closed umbrella is very realistic, and while it seems a smidge small, it's definitely going to be something he's always holding on my shelf. I suspect the same will be true of the large case, with leather straps and a fantastic paint job. These are iconic accessories for the character, so the attention to detail and realism is much appreciated.

There's also the Grail itself, painted to look like the gold is flaking and worn. It doesn't look quite screen accurate to me, but it's tough to tell for sure. Still, it looks great in his hands, and will also look nice sitting behind him on a table or book case in a diorama.

There's also the extra set of fisted hands, as well as the usual display stand.

Finally, the exclusive comes with the tablet. I'm clearly not a big enough Indy nerd, because it never dawned on me to try to make my own rubbing. I'll take Guy's word for it.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Outfit - Guy - ***3/4; MWC ****
Guy - The wind up, the pitch, and WACK!! out of the park it goes.  The glasses…YES, the glasses. They are perfect.  We have it, ladies and gentleman, our first perfect pair of 1/6th scale character accurate glasses. Clean lenses and tiny brass frames and Indy’s Dad comes to life. 

The hat is sculpted and that’s the best idea as with a cloth one it may have been too floppy and looked like the hat that came with Kenner’s 1981 Indiana Jones Action Figure. This one has all the right texture and stitching, and the paint wash on it does it justice. It is not easy to get a tweed hat right in any scale at all but yet here we have one.  

The suit is impressive as well. The buttons are to scale and not overly large and what Sideshow remembered and Medicom forgot was the leather belt that goes around the waist of his vest. The choice of fabric in this scale really gives it great life. The vest is a hook and closer so it could be removed but I see no reason for it unless you have two of the figures and want to do the open vest bloody shirt, end of the movie figure.  Hey…there’s and idea. 

The collar of the white shirt is high and covers the neck joint well; it’s truer than in other versions of this character. The shoes are great too. They have dust on them as well as dark laces and lighter stitching. The tie is the second non-cloth item on him besides the hat. They chose a molded tie and painted the tiny dots onto it. Medicom used a cloth tie on theirs and that may be the only thing I like more on their figure. So if you bought the Medicom version and this one and now have no idea what to do with your other one, use the tie and give this baby the 4 star outfit treatment.  Nice job Sideshow.

MWC - Again, I'm being more generous than Guy. This is fairly rare...guest reviewers are usually more generous than I, but I have to say that the glasses are what really blows me away. They're so good, and so close to proper scale (finally), that I suspect I may have gone a bit overboard here.

I actually do have a few nits here, but not enough to supersede my overwhelming gratitude for proper glasses. While I like this suit better than the Medicom version overall, the fit is a little tight, and the color seems slightly off. I prefer the plastic bow tie and hat, since cloth versions never look right in this scale. The sculpted hat could use a little more texturing to match the movie version, but again, a minor issue.

Yep, it's really all about those glasses. They fit his face properly, they're the right scale (you might think they're still a little big at first glance, but the glasses he wore were actually a bit larger than you might remember), and they really, really are the one touch that allows the excellent sculpt to truly look like Henry Jones.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Fun Factor - Guy - ***; MWC **1/2
Guy - As I said before asking me to tell you how much fun Indy toys are is not at all fair. To me they are all awesome but this one is great. I love having something this accurate to my obsession here to look at. Get this figure now.  

MWC - yep, he's a fun figure, and other than the glasses (which are naturally fragile), he's quite sturdy and could actually stand up to some regular play. Still, this isn't really a line you want to pick up for the kids - stick with Hasbro.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Value - Guy ***1/2; MWC ***1/2
Guy - He is more than worth the 90-dollar price tag.  I cannot say enough good things about this figure and when you look at the earlier version at $150 you know how great what Sideshow did is.

MWC - he's certainly well worth the $80 - $90 you'll currently pay. In fact, he outshines the much more expensive Medicom version in almost every way, and is one of the nicest figures Sideshow has done in this price range.

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Things to Watch Out For -
Guy - Be careful with those glasses. They are tiny and fragile so take a breath and put them on the figure slowly, then sit back and gaze in awe. Take some extra time if you slide the umbrella along the top of the case and then put two into his hand, as it will be tight so do not push it, again take it slow.

MWC - what Guy said about those glasses. If you break them, you'll be crying the rest of the day, and no one likes to see a grown man cry.

Overall - Guy - *** 1/2, MWC ****
Guy - Wow. I was so excited to see him on display at SDCC, but here in my hands he looks even better. The accessories and the sculpt and the paint are so dead on, Sideshow can stand this figure next to any Hot Toy figure and be proud. My Christmas wish is that Sideshow keep the line going at this level and that they give me a Marion Ravenwood for the New Year.

MWC - Had they gotten Lando's head size right and not cheaped out on the belt, this is how good that figure could have been. This figure is the cream of their Indy line, and if we get future releases at this level of quality, it will make a lot of Indy fans very, very happy.

I suspect these glasses are going to be very high in demand, even though they don't quite work for every situation. I know I'd like to pick up an extra pair to paint silver and pop on Toht, that's for sure!

Score Recap (out of ****):
Packaging - Guy ***, MWC ***1/2
Sculpting - Guy ****; MWC ****
Paint - Guy ****, MWC ***1/2
Articulation - Guy ***1/2; MWC ***1/2
Accessories - Guy *** (regular) ***1/2 (exclusive); MWC ****
Outfit - Guy - ***3/4; MWC ****
Fun Factor - Guy - ***; MWC **1/2
Value - Guy ***1/2; MWC ***1/2
Overall - Guy - ***1/2, MWC ****

Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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Where to Buy 
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Sideshow was the place originally, and you can still get on their wait list for the exclusive or regular.

- has it for $81.

- normally sells him for $87, but has a damaged box version for $65 right now.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
Past Indy reviews include:

- Sideshow has done the German Outfit Indy, Toht (with Ark), Belloq with the Fertility Idol Environment, and Indy himself.

- Medicom has released Dr. Henry Jones as well, and Young Indy.

- and Hasbro did several figures, including Indy in German Disguise, Cairo Swordsman and German Soldier, and two versions of Indy.

- also in approximately this same scale is the Kotobukiya Henry Jones Sr. statue.

You should also hit the Search Reviews page, in case any other applicable reviews were done after this one was published.

Want to chat about this review?  Try out one of these terrific forums where I'll be discussing it!

Enjoyed this review? Be sure to head back to the main page to find thousands more just like it!

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Indiana Jones Dr. Henry Jones Sr. action figure by Sideshow Collectibles

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This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford and Guy Klender.

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